EclipseLink Solutions Guide for EclipseLink
Release 2.4
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Using Dynamic JAXB/MOXy

Dynamic JAXB/MOXy allows you to bootstrap a JAXBContext from a variety of metadata sources and use familiar JAXB APIs to marshal and unmarshal data, without requiring compiled domain classes. This is an enhancement over static JAXB, because now you can update the metadata without having to update and recompile the previously-generated Java source code.

The benefits of using dynamic JAXB/MOXy entities are:

The following Tasks demonstrate how to use dynamic JAXB:

Task 1: Bootstrap a Dynamic JAXBContext from an XML Schema

This example demonstrates how to bootstrap a dynamic JAXBContext from an XML Schema.

Bootstrapping from an XML Schema

Use the DynamicJAXBContextFactory to create a dynamic JAXBContext. Example 15-26 to bootstrap a DynamicJAXBContext from the customer.xsd schema (Example 15-27) by using createContextFromXSD().

Example 15-26 Specifying the Input Stream and Creating the DynamicJAXBContext

import java.io.FileInputStream;
import org.eclipse.persistence.jaxb.dynamic.DynamicJAXBContext;
import org.eclipse.persistence.jaxb.dynamic.DynamicJAXBContextFactory;
public class Demo {
    public static void main(String[] args) throws Exception {
        FileInputStream xsdInputStream = new FileInputStream("src/example/customer.xsd");
        DynamicJAXBContext jaxbContext = 
            DynamicJAXBContextFactory.createContextFromXSD(xsdInputStream, null, null, null);

The first parameter represents the XML schema itself and must be in one of the following forms: java.io.InputStream, org.w3c.dom.Node, or javax.xml.transform.Source.

The XML Schema

Example 15-27 shows the customer.xsd schema that represents the metadata for the dynamic JAXBContext you are bootstrapping.

Example 15-27 Sample XML Schema Document

   <xsd:complexType name="address">
         <xsd:element name="street" type="xsd:string" minOccurs="0"/>
         <xsd:element name="city" type="xsd:string" minOccurs="0"/>
   <xsd:element name="customer">
            <xsd:element name="name" type="xsd:string" minOccurs="0"/>
            <xsd:element name="address" type="address" minOccurs="0"/>

Handling Schema Import/Includes

To bootstrap DynamicJAXBContext from an XML schema that contains imports of other schemas, you need to configure an org.xml.sax.EntityResolver to resolve the locations of the imported schemas and pass the EntityResolver to DynamicJAXBContextFactory.

The following example shows two schema documents, customer.xsd (Example 15-28) and address.xsd Example 15-29). You can see that customer.xsd imports address.xsd by using the statement:

<xsd:import namespace="http://www.example.org/address" schemaLocation="address.xsd"/>

Example 15-28 customer.xsd

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
   <xsd:import namespace="http://www.example.org/address" schemaLocation="address.xsd"/>
   <xsd:element name="customer">
            <xsd:element name="name" type="xsd:string" minOccurs="0"/>
            <xsd:element name="address" type="add:address" minOccurs="0"/>

Example 15-29 address.xsd

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
    <xsd:complexType name="address">
            <xs:element name="street" type="xs:string"/>
            <xs:element name="city" type="xs:string"/>

Implementing and Passing an EntityResolver

If you want to bootstrap DynamicJAXBContext from the customer.xsd schema, you need to pass an entity resolver. Do the following:

  1. To resolve the locations of the imported schemas, you need to implement an entityResolver by supplying the code shown in Example 15-30.

    Example 15-30 Implementing an EntityResolver

    class MyEntityResolver implements EntityResolver {
        public InputSource resolveEntity(String publicId, String systemId) throws SAXException, IOException {
          // Imported schemas are located in ext\appdata\xsd\
           // Grab only the filename part from the full path
          String filename = new File(systemId).getName();
          // Now prepend the correct path
          String correctedId = "ext/appdata/xsd/" + filename;
          InputSource is = new InputSource(ClassLoader.getSystemResourceAsStream(correctedId));
          return is;
  2. After you implement your DynamicJAXBContext, pass the EntityResolver, as shown in Example 15-31.

    Example 15-31 Passing in the Entityresolver

    FileInputStream xsdInputStream = new FileInputStream("src/example/customer.xsd");
    DynamicJAXBContext jaxbContext = 
        DynamicJAXBContextFactory.createContextFromXSD(xsdInputStream, new MyEntityResolver(), null, null);

Error Handling

You might see the following exception when importing another schema:

Internal Exception: org.xml.sax.SAXParseException: schema_reference.4: Failed to read schemadocument '<imported-schema-name>', because 1) could not find the document; 2) the document couldnot be read; 3) the root element of the document is not <xsd:schema>.

To work around this exception, disable XJC's schema correctness check by setting the noCorrectnessCheck Java property. You can set this property one of two ways:

  • From within the code, by adding this line:

    System.setProperty("com.sun.tools.xjc.api.impl.s2j.SchemaCompilerImpl.noCorrectnessCheck", "true")
  • From the command line, by using this command:


Specifying a ClassLoader

Use your application's current class loader as the classLoader parameter. This parameter verifies that specified classes exist before new DynamicTypes are generated. In most cases you can pass null for this parameter and use Thread.currentThread().getContextClassLoader() instead.

Task 2: Create Dynamic Entities and Marshal Them to XML

This example shows how to create dynamic entities and marshal then to XML.

Creating the Dynamic Entities

Use the DynamicJAXBContext to create instances of DynamicEntity. The entity and property names correspond to the class and property names—in this case, the customer and address—that would have been generated if you had used static JAXB.

Example 15-32 Creating the Dynamic Entity

DynamicEntity customer = jaxbContext.newDynamicEntity("org.example.Customer");
customer.set("name", "Jane Doe");
DynamicEntity address = jaxbContext.newDynamicEntity("org.example.Address");
address.set("street", "1 Any Street").set("city", "Any Town");
customer.set("address", address);

Marshalling the Dynamic Entities to XML

The marshaller obtained from the DynamicJAXBContext is a standard marshaller and can be used normally to marshal instances of DynamicEntity.

Example 15-33 Standard Dynamic JAXB Marshaller

Marshaller marshaller = jaxbContext.createMarshaller();
marshaller.setProperty(Marshaller.JAXB_FORMATTED_OUTPUT, true);marshaller.marshal(customer, System.out);

Example 15-34 shows the resultant XML document:

Example 15-34 Updated XML Document Showing <address> Element and Its Attributes

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<customer xmlns="www.example.org">
   <name>Jane Doe</name>
      <street>1 Any Street</street>
      <city>Any Town</city>

Task 3: Unmarshal the Dynamic Entities from XML

In this example shows how to unmarshal from XML the dynamic entities you created in Task 2: Create Dynamic Entities and Marshal Them to XML. The XML in reference is shown in Example 15-34.

Unmarshal DynamicEntities from XML

The Unmarshaller obtained from the DynamicJAXBContext is a standard unmarshaller, and can be used normally to unmarshal instances of DynamicEntity.

Example 15-35 Standard Dynamic JAXB Unmarshaller

FileInputStream xmlInputStream = new FileInputStream("src/example/dynamic/customer.xml");
Unmarshaller unmarshaller = jaxbContext.createUnmarshaller();
DynamicEntity customer = (DynamicEntity) unmarshaller.unmarshal(xmlInputStream);

Get Data from the Dynamic Entity

Next, specify which data in the dynamic entity to obtain. Specify this value by using System.out.println() and passing in the entity name. DynamicEntity offers property-based data access; for example, get("name") instead of getName():


Use DynamicType to Introspect Dynamic Entity

Instances of DynamicEntity have a corresponding DynamicType, which you can use to introspect the DynamicEntity, as shown in Example 15-36.

Example 15-36

DynamicType addressType = jaxbContext.getDynamicType("org.example.Address");
DynamicEntity address = customer.<DynamicEntity>get("address");
for(String propertyName: addressType.getPropertiesNames()) {
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